URI to host wind energy conference April 19-20

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Results of Rhode Island wind turbine siting study to be announced

NARRAGANSETT, R.I. – April 12, 2007 – Wind energy experts from around the country will convene at the University of Rhode Island April 19-20 for a conference aimed at addressing ways to emeet Gov. Donald Carcieri’s goal of having 15 percent of the state’s electricity be generated by wind within the next five years.

The conference, “From Local to Global: The Rhode Island Model for Harnessing Wind Power Worldwide,” will be held in Corless Auditorium on URI’s Bay Campus in Narragansett. The event is free and open to the public, but registration is required by Monday, April 16 and space is limited.

Sponsors of the conference are URI, Roger Williams University, the Washington County Regional Planning Council, and the Rhode Island Office of Energy Resources.

“The conference will provide an in-depth examination of the complex issues involved in the local development of clean, renewable energy,” said Jerri Paquin, co-coordinator of the conference and the associate director of the URI Research Center in Business and Economics. “By focusing on efforts to implement wind power in Rhode Island, the conference will demonstrate how a local initiative can become a national and global model for increasing clean renewable energy sources.”

A key presentation on the second day of the conference will be a report on the results of a wind turbine siting study for Rhode Island by Dan Mendelsohn, vice president of Applied Technology Management. Mendelsohn’s firm was commissioned by the state of Rhode Island to investigate how to implement Gov. Carcieri’s 15 percent wind energy goal.

Other subjects to be addressed include renewable energy and global health, public opinion about wind power, the economic viability of wind power, and its impact on wildlife. Speakers include Eleftherios Pavlides, director of the Wind Power Rhode Island Project and a professor of architecture at Roger Williams University; Robert Vanderslice, chief of the Office of Environmental Health Risk Assessment for the Rhode Island Department of Health; John Herrick, chief counsel for the U.S. Department of Energy; Michael Jacobs, deputy policy director for the American Wind Energy Association; Jamie Ballem, Prince Edward Island minister of the environment; and Thomas Christiansen, Denmark’s minister of the environment.

Participants will also tour the Portsmouth Abbey School wind turbine.

For a complete conference agenda and registration information, visit www.windri.org/conference.